MFA - Film & Media Arts

The Master of Fine Arts in Film & Media Arts emphasizes studio film and video productions. In addition to production coursework and projects, students are required to establish a strong theoretical grounding in film history and criticism classes. The Program prepares students for employment in the motion picture industry and/or entry into the teaching profession.

The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) may take between two and three years for completion with 55 credit hours required. Graduation requirements include:

  • A portfolio of creative work.
  • A written evaluation of the MFA thesis project.
  • A copy of the candidate’s work provided to the Film & Media Arts Department.
  • A comprehensive examination in Film History.

Applicants selected to attend are all offered Teaching Assistantship Positions with Tuition Benefits included. Levels of Teaching Assistantships vary from year to year. Applicants should email the Program Manager for additional information.

pdfDownload the MFA Handbook.

Application Guidelines

The Department of Film & Media Arts accepts applications for fall admittance. The application deadline is December 31st. The online Graduate School application can be found here. To complete the graduate school application you will need the following items:

  1. Transcripts from all prior higher education institutions you have attended. You will be asked to upload your transcripts. If you are accepted to the program you may receive a request to have official transcripts mailed directly to the admissions office.
  2. A sample of critical writing (from any discipline).
  3. A letter of personal intent explaining why you want to attend the University of Utah and what you hope to accomplish during your studies here. We are interested in your ideas about filmmaking and how you express yourself in writing.
  4. Three (3) contacts for letters of recommendation (preferably academic).
  5. In addition to the Graduate School application you must submit the following to The Department of Film & Media Arts:
    An example of your own work in film or video indicative of your personal creative approach to the medium. Your creative submission should showcase no more than 20 minutes of the best examples of your filmmaking work. At least one complete piece should be included, “reels” or short excerpts of pieces are not preferred by the committee. You may submit your work as a DVD or a URL link. Please include a separate document describing related information (medium, date completed, etc.) and your role in the work submitted (cinematographer, screenwriter, director, etc.). Your creative submission should be mailed to: Film & Media Arts, 375 South 1530 East, Room 270, Salt Lake City, UT 84112 or sent via email to .

Any questions about submitting materials can be directed to:
Paula Lee, Program Manager

If you have questions about this program, please contact:
Chris Lippard, Director of Graduate Studies